Winnie Rust trial to continue

2017-10-23 05:14
Nigel Plaaitjies and his uncle Johannes appear in the Western Cape High Court. (James de Villiers, News24)

Nigel Plaaitjies and his uncle Johannes appear in the Western Cape High Court. (James de Villiers, News24)

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Cape Town – The Winnie Rust murder trial is due to continue in the Western Cape High Court on Monday.

Nigel Plaatjies and his uncle Johannes Plaatjies are accused of murdering the 77-year-old author – a relative of his mother’s employer – in her Uitsig home last year.

The once promising athlete and his mother’s brother are accused of killing Rust on May 11, 2016.

Her husband, Dr Manie Rust, 87, had been asleep at the time and later found her on the kitchen floor when he heard the bell at the gate ringing at 15:30 that day.

The Afrikaans author had injuries to her face. She had been strangled and her hands and feet were bound.

It emerged during their pre-trial conference that both men intended pleading not guilty.

His mother worked for Rust's daughter, and the author had been paying for his sports activities and school fees since he was in primary school.

He regularly visited her home.

Plaatjies unsuccessfully applied for bail twice.

He, in his initial statement to police, claimed he was forced to take part in the robbery at Rust's home as Johannes owed a drug lord money and his family’s safety had been threatened.

During his second attempt at bail, Nigel told the court he walked in on the robbery. He said he had an appointment to see Rust to discuss her paying for him to get his driver's licence.

His uncle along with three others had been robbing the house, Plaatjies claimed, and he had been forced to take part.

Laptops, a handbag, bank cards, a cellphone, and rings from Rust’s hand were taken.

Nigel had no prior convictions, while his uncle had a string of crimes to his name, including a conviction for housebreaking, eight for theft, two for assault, and two for drunk driving.

Read more on:    cape town  |  crime

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